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Why I became a singing teacher: Lisa Haupert

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Lisa Haupert (Nashville, Tennessee, USA)

From the age of 12 until 40, most of what I experienced as a voice student can best be described as voo-doo. I teach singing because no voice teacher or singing student or vocal artist should have to put up with voo-doo.

When I was about 25 I traveled to Bassano del Grappa, Italy, where I was supposed to study with the renowned operatic baritone, Tito Gobbi. Mr. Gobbi died shortly before I arrived and I worked with a replacement teacher. That teacher basically yelled at me in Italian for two weeks and told me I should give up singing. I vowed to never sing again. I was a casualty of voo-doo teaching.

That silence lasted only a year when I began studying with Kristin Chenoweth’s teacher, Florence Birdwell, at Oklahoma City University. Even though Florence couldn’t explain in detail how the voice worked acoustically and physiologically, she understood the fundamental principles of vocal fold, laryngeal, respiratory, and acoustic function. Plus, she was inspiring, hopeful, and passionate with her students. Working with Florence was my first truly positive lesson in how to work with clients and my first inkling that there were teachers who know how the voice really works.

Soon I began teaching singing lessons because others asked me to teach them to do what I did. But I quickly learned that I did not have enough understanding of how the voice truly works and how humans change and learn with the most joy and least resistance.

In 1998 my younger son took a musical theater course from which he brought home a brochure about the singing technique the program was using. As I poured over the information, I recognized that this was describing a singing technique based upon the physiological and acoustical functioning of the parts of the body that give us our singing voices. It was the second glimmer I had that there was pedagogy for teaching singing that integrated one of the missing links for me – how the voice really works. This made sense to my nurse-brain and my singing-brain. At that point I became an ardent student of singing teaching.

Since that time, way back in 1998, I have been teaching. My knowledge has grown substantially about how the voice and body work to produce singing. I’ve learned how to teach people to sing their style yet maintain excellent vocal function and health. I’ve learned how to help others make changes in their coordination so that they can sing the tone and style they want to sing.

In 2012 I took a course to become certified as a professional Coach. I studied human change theory, motivation theory, positive psychology, and talk therapy. Now I had the other missing link – how humans learn and change in order to reach their goals, with the most joy and least resistance.

As of this writing, I am 58 years old. I have recently embarked upon learning how to sing in a completely different style, and am having good success at it. If the teacher that works with me did not know how the voice really works, this endeavor would have been an absolute failure and I would not be able to reach my goal.

I teach voice and teach teachers because I now know that our clients really CAN achieve their goals. I’ve personally experienced it. I’ve seen it work over and over. And I want you to get what you need to truly reach your goals, VOO-DOO FREE.

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